|Title||Durban Reality Tour|
|Date released (year)||2009|
|Production company||Malinga Productions|
|Location||Durban, South Africa|
|Keywords/tags||Dumping, toxic waste, sustainability, informal settlements|
|Link to film||https://vimeo.com/10374472
|Synopsis||On 4th November 2009, the Centre for Civil Society at the University of KwaZulu-Natal led a tour of Durban that conveys the gritty reality faced by ordinary Durbanites. This video documents the highlights of the tour, including the ‘toxic’ South Durban Industrial Basin, the tented community of Crossmoor and, on a more positive note, the development of an organic community garden and biodigester in the township of Cato Manor.|
|Reviews/discussion||When critically‑minded people visit Durban and seek out a ‘reality tour’ typically denied by the mainstream tourist circuit, one of the stops is the Centre for Civil Society at the University of KwaZulu‑Natal. Located at the highest point in Durban (the top floors of Memorial Tower Building in Glenwood), the Centre introduces sympathetic visitors to the work of leading social activists and environmentalists. The sites that kombi‑taxis arranged by CCS reach include an inner‑city tense with resistance to xenophobia and gentrification, the largest petrochemical complex in a residential area in Africa, a variety of shack settlements and working‑class ‘African’, ‘Indian’ and ‘coloured’ neighbourhoods, the hotly‑contested source of Durban’s water at Inanda Dam, and the university environs.
In the ‘centre of toxic Africa’, residents say they can identify nausea, drowsiness, vomiting and headaches by industrial sources.
There’s the metaphorical whiff of diplomats burning the midnight oil to find a deal at the the UN climate talks. But 5km away in south Durban, the air really does smell of rotten cabbage, cat wee and almonds.
With two crude oil refineries, South Africa‘s two biggest paper mills, its biggest container port, a dozen chemical companies, several major landfill sites and a huge number of factories together producing 80% of South Africa‘s oil products and much of its industrial emissions, south Durban locals have learned to identify the coughs, nausea, drowsiness, vomiting and headaches they suffer by their sources.
Oil companies are said to create a stink of a cocktail of rotten eggs and burned matches, a carworks reeks of ethanol and the vinegar smell comes from a leather company.
South African Environmental Justice struggles against “toxic” petrochemical industries in South Durban: The Engen Refinery Case
This case study explores the South Durban community’s struggle against disproportionate exposure to a hazardous environment and sulphur dioxide pollution, and at the same time, being faced with “clear and present” health hazards linked to petrochemical industrial production. To unpack the environmental justice challenges facing post-apartheid South Africa, the case study examines the role played by the South Durban Community Environmental Alliance in articulating environmental injustices and poor environmental responsibility of the petrochemical industry in South Africa.
|Links to other resources||Africa’s Biggest Landfill Site: The Case Of Bisasar Road | by Patrick Bond and Khadija Sharife: http://www.amandlapublishers.co.za/amandla-blog/patrick-bond/1196-africas-biggest-landfill-site-the-case-of-bisasar-road–by-patrick-bond-and-khadija-sharife|